Substance abuse problems often originate during the teenage years, when most people have their first experiences with alcohol and drugs. These formative years present both obstacles and opportunities for helping teens and their families deal with the issues and dangers involved with substance abuse, before the problems worsen and become more chronic.
Teens are at a different place than adults, and may be very resistant to treatment. It's typical to find them in the pre-contemplation stage of change, where they don't view their use as problematic, that they have control over it and can stop whenever they want. It's important to meet them where they are at, to help them see the problems drinking or taking drugs are causing, the reasons they may be using, and the consequences of continuing.
We believe strongly in treating teens as the unique individuals they are, and believe there is no better time to help them address the issues that are threatening them from becoming healthy and productive adults. We help our clients learn about themselves and their problem, challenge their thoughts and behaviors, focus on their strengths and interests, develop critical areas where they are lacking confidence, and find the answers and motivation they need to move in a more positive direction.
Often times there are underlying issues that need to be addressed such as social, emotional or mental problems, family issues, trauma or abuse. We also focus on the learned and behavioral aspects of the problem, which may be at an early stage of development and easier to change. If there is a co-occurring mental health disorder, or dual diagnosis, our philosophy is to treat both problems concurrently.